Soul Underground: talent is an asset

A large part of the fun of running Soul Underground was seeing such a disparate group of people – soul boys, import junkies, rap obsessives, club promoters and borderline anarchists – come together to fill my little magazine for 38 monthly issues.

The list below includes all contributors featured in Catch The Beat.

Darren Reynolds MIA. After leaving Soul Underground, Darren moved overseas to work on his creative writing.

Paul Ablett has continued to write for The Face, Sky Magazine and Observer Magazine, as well as working as a music TV researcher, before returning to music management. He’s managed Morcheeba and Steve Chrisanthou (Corinne Bailey Rae’s producer) and currently manages Black Black Hills Tim Saul and Dawn Landes. Paul also lectures on Music Management.

Leonard Abrams was US Editor of Soul Underground, previous to which he published and edited East Village Eye magazine and created the multiracial hip hop club Hotel Amazon. He produced and directed the 2006 documentary Quilombo Country, about rural Afrobrazilian villages, and is now working on a book based on material from the East Village Eye.

Alice Arnold is a photographer, a documentary filmmaker and an educator. She is the recipient of a NYFA Fellowship and a Fulbright Fellowship and her work has been screened at the Museum of Modern Art. In addition to making media she also teaches media studies and media production..

Lindsay Baker has worked as a commissioning editor and feature writer on The Face, the Observer and Guardian Weekend. She is now a freelance writer for, among others, the Sunday Times Style.

Brian Belle-Fortune became involved in the Drum & Bass scene, conceiving ‘One in the Jungle’ – BBC Radio One’s first D & B show – as well as DJing in clubs and on pirate radio as DJ Zyon. In ’99 he wrote cult classic All Crews – Journeys through Jungle Drum & Bass Culture. Brian, who now has Multiple Sclerosis, lives in Tottenham with wife Kate and two children.

David Corio was born in London and has been a photographer for over 30 years. His work has featured in many magazines and newspapers along with his books The Black Chord (Universe 1999) and Megaliths (Jonathan Cape 2003).

Bill Dew has continued to pursue the revolution of everyday life in London, Jamaica and the Midlands, with varying degrees of success. Linchpin of the Black Limelight design empire, he occasionally puts cat amongst pigeons as DJ 100% Punk-No Rock.

Richard Faulks lives and works in the countryside, photographing outdoor pursuits for a wide range of magazines. He’s also photographed and co-published a number of cookbooks, including Simply Good Taste: Great Food for Friends and Family.

Tim Fielding started Journeys by DJ, partnered in The End and works in the US mobile phone industry. He DJs at Brooklyn warehouse parties, attends Burning Man, and is slowly turning his adventures in clubland into a novel.

Muff Fitzgerald became a regular contributor to Record Mirror, DJ and Muzik amongst other titles. He also reported on music and cinema for KISS FM and BBC Radio, before becoming a PR for Virgin Records. He promoted acts as diverse as The Brotherhood, Shaggy and the Spice Girls – recorded on his book, Spiced Up! Muff has since retired to work on his allotment. His broccoli is doing rather well this year.

Hannah Ford continued writing for Hip Hop Connection and Select, and co-created Muthaland, the groundbreaking hip hop/urban club. She’s since been a curator and teacher, and currently works for a global design studio.

Patrick Forge has been busy for the last 20 years – working as a DJ, producer and writer. He’s played alongside Gilles Peterson at Dingwalls, created compilations such as Rebirth of Cool, made music with Da Lata and produced jazz in Japan. Living between Tokyo, London and Okinawa, he is currently working on a book and several music projects.

Michael Alan Gonzales currently writes for Wax Poetics, Vibe, Soulsummer.com and his blog Blackadelic Pop. His Curtis Mayfield-inspired short story “Grace’s Love Theme” appeared in Tell Tales 4. He lives in Brooklyn.

Louise Gray has written for numerous publications, including NME, Melody Maker, The Times and the Guardian, first focusing on the early House scene, then broadening out to cover music and art. She is now a writer and editor working with The Wire, New Internationalist and organisations including the British Council. Her No-Nonsense Guide to World Music was published by New Internationalist in 2009.

Malu Halasa has coauthored several books, including The Secret Life of Syrian Lingerie. Her Transit series features new writing and images from Middle Eastern cities, Tehran and Beirut. She recently finished her first novel, Mother of All Pigs.

Jasper has DJ’d at pirate L.W.R to DJ, Kiss, Choice, BBC 1Xtra and Jazz FM, while writing for the likes of Blues & Soul and Time Out. He’s also created compilations for Mastercuts and BBE, and kept the P-Funk flame burning in London for a decade with club night Funkin’ Pussy.

Jazzy M set up London’s Vinyl Zone record shop, and signed Orbital to his Oh Zone label, releasing their seminal single Chime. He’s produced and remixed over 100 records, while his Jackin’ Zone on pirate LWR was the UK’s first House radio show. He DJd the opening night of the Ministry of Sound and for seven years was resident at the club. He currently teaches DJing at MoS’s Academy and is House producer and DJ at Kane FM.

Johnny S aka Adeniyi (John) Shonubi went on to secure South East London’s first Black Radio Station with Stella Headley. He later joined BT where he became a senior manager for their Media and Broadcast division. John now runs his own ICT company in Africa.

Judge Jules has worked as a radio DJ on Kiss FM and then Radio 1 (since 1997). He has traveled all over the world as one of clubland’s best-known DJs and released many hundreds of remixes and productions.

Ian McCann has worked for NME, Radio 1, News of the World and The Independent, and has over 250 album credits. He is also a DJ and owns 217 record decks, all the same model.

Antonio Mattesini was born in London and now lives in Italy. Currently he is collaborating on a jazz documentary, organising photography workshops and enjoying the food and wine.

Dan Parker has now spent 20 years working in journalism, on titles ranging from The Stage and the Daily Express to bikers’ monthly Backstreet Heroes. The last five years have been spent as Group Art and Production Editor at Incisive Media.

Olaf Parker launched and designed cult 90’s fashion label Burro with his wife Su on the back of their iconic “No Alla Violenza” T-Shirt. The pair are currently relaunching the brand. Olaf is now also working as a fashion consultant for the BBC.

Dom Phillips edited Mixmag from 1993-1998, before becoming an arts writer for The Guardian and Independent. His book Superstar DJs Here We Go was published in 2009. He now lives in São Paulo, Brazil where he writes for The Times, Grazia, People, FT and Global Post.

Andrew Pothecary moved from photography to design, and then from London to Tokyo. He still sometimes photographs music and musicians.

Kristina Raven moved from music to movies, working as a film production assistant in the UK and Europe, and then into fashion and luxury goods where she works in business development. She calls Paris home although her official residence is currently in Germany. Any remaining time is spent in Italy, Luxembourg and Sweden practicing her languages.

Jay Strongman was a pioneer of the early days of London clubland, having  DJ’d at such groundbreaking 1980s clubs as the Dirtbox, the Mud Club and the Warehouse. He was on KISS FM for seven years and reported on dance music for The Face, i-D, the Sunday Times and numerous other publications. After DJing around the globe Jay has settled in Los Angeles where he writes on American popular culture and still spins – playing everything from surf to house music.